Repeatability of cardiac-MRI-measured right ventricular size and function in congenital heart disease



The measurement error for right ventricular (RV) size and function assessed by cardiac MRI (CMRI) in congenital heart disease has not been fully characterized. As CMRI parameters are being increasingly utilized to make clinical decisions, defining error in the clinical setting is critical.


This investigation examines the repeatability of CMRI for RV size and function.

Materials and methods

Forty consecutive people with congenital heart disease involving the RV were retrospectively identified. Contouring of RV volumes was performed by two expert CMRI clinicians. The coefficient of variability and repeatability coefficients were calculated. Repeatability coefficients were multiplied by the mean value for each group studied to define a threshold beyond which measurement error was unlikely to be responsible.


The variability for indexed RV end-diastolic volume = 3.2% and 3.3% for intra- and interobserver comparisons, respectively. The repeatability coefficients were 13.2% and 14.9% for intra- and interobserver comparisons, which yielded threshold values of 15.1 ml/m^2 and 20.2 ml/m^2, respectively. For RV ejection fraction (EF), the repeatability coefficients for intra- and interobserver comparisons were 5.0% and 6.0%, which resulted in threshold values of 2.6 EF% and 3.0 EF%.


The threshold values generated can be used during serial assessment of RV size and function.

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Cardiac MRI


Ejection fraction


Right ventricle


Tetralogy of Fallot


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Correspondence to James C. Nielsen.

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Walsh, R., Salem, Y., Shah, A. et al. Repeatability of cardiac-MRI-measured right ventricular size and function in congenital heart disease. Pediatr Radiol 41, 1000 (2011) doi:10.1007/s00247-011-2033-3

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  • Congenital heart disease
  • Tetralogy of Fallot
  • Ventricular size
  • Children
  • Cardiac MRI